Chelsea vs. Wigan: Premier League Live Score, Highlights, Recap
Chelsea 4-1 Wigan, Stamford Bridge, Full Time
Despite getting off to a resilient start, Wigan unsurprisingly fell to a Chelsea side that went up midway through the first period thanks to some sublime Ramires finishing.
A halftime 1-0 deficit was made to look all the worse in the second half when finishes from Eden Hazard, Frank Lampard and Marko Marin were simply too much for the visiting outfit.
Shaun Maloney originally pulled his team back into contention early in the second half but the Scot's goal wasn't enough to stop this result from being seen as anything but embarrassing.
Chelsea Starting XI: Cech, Azpilicueta, Ivanovic, Cahill, Cole, D Luiz, Lampard, Ramires, Oscar, Hazard, Torres
Chelsea Bench: Turnbull, Ferreira, Bertrand, Benayoun, Marin, Mata, Ba
Scorers: Ramires (23'), Hazard (56`'), Lampard (87'), Marin (90'+2)
Wigan Athletic Starting XI: Al Habsi, McCarthy, Caldwell, Di Santo, Maloney, McArthur, Espinoza, Beausejour, Stam, Figueroa, Scharner
Wigan Athletic Bench: Robles, Kone, Jones, Henriquez, Gomez, McManaman, Golobart
Scorers: Maloney (58')
Despite some valiant efforts in the first half, Wigan Athletic ultimately fall victim to the vast resources at Stamford Bridge.
What was looking like a promising trip turned grim in the second half and some late goals from Frank Lampard and Marko Marin heaped further woe and an eventually timid Latics outfit.
90'+4—YELLOW CARD (Marin)
Marko Marin is cautioned for entering the crowd upon scoring.
It's his first goal for Chelsea and it might be the quickest he'll ever score.
Cesar Azpilicueta soars towards the Wigan goal, unleashing a powerful shot at Ali Al-Habsi that the goalkeeper can only tip sideways, lashed in by a grateful Marko Marin.
An easier goal, he may never score.
90'+2—CHE 3-1 WIG
Just two minutes of added time left to run at Stamford Bridge.
Benitez exhausts his resources and throws Marko Marin on in place of Eden Hazard, who was mightily impressive at times today.
Just after that Lampard goal, Yossi Benayoun came on for an injured Gary Cahill.
Luiz reverts back to defence.
Signed, sealed and Frank Lampard delivers the goods.
Eden Hazard wanders into the left edge of the Wigan box before passing back towards the edge of the area. Juan Mata dummies so that Lampard is free to stroke the ball effortlessly past a helpess Ali Al-Habsi.
3-1. Game over.
86'—CHE 2-1 WIG
Gary Cahill, who Rafa Benitez thought would be okay, is once again signalling to the Blues bench that he may need to come off.
Need to get that one sorted soon lest they suffer a late equaliser.
Defender off for a midfielder as David Jones comes on to replace Ronnie Stam.
82'—CHE 2-1 WIG
Hazard makes his own run down the left wing before slotting in Ashley Cole expertly but the England defender can do nothing to orchestrate a chance from the flank.
Wigan then go down the other end and it's Arouna Kone that tests Petr Cech from just outside the area.
79'—YELLOW CARD (Figueroa)
Maynor Figueroa is the latest name to go into the book after taking out Ramires, who had just nicked the ball ahead of the Honduran international as he rampaged toward Al-Habsi's net.
Oscar's afternoon comes to an end as Juan Mata is introduced in place of the youngster.
75'—CHE 2-1 WIG
Encouragingly for Wigan, Franco Di Santo forces David Luiz into making a very good block after controlling a lofted ball well inside the Blues box.
The Latics are now enjoying a phase of their own corners..
73'—CHE 2-1 WIG
Kone has given the visitors a good avenue to look for since coming on 10 minutes ago.
The Ivorian is more up to the task of holding off Chelsea defenders than his teammates have been thus far; a physical aspect Wigan have been lacking in thus far.
70'—CHE 2-1 WIG
Oscar shows some magnificent Samba skill to evade two of his Wigan markers.
So often we see youngsters not live up to their potential but the young Brazilian truly promises to be something special, even in the more brutal climate of the Premier League.
67'—CHE 2-1 WIG
Chelsea are once again threatening to pounce on the Wigan goal and continue to find luck down the wings with full-backs Ashley Cole and Azpilicueta enjoying some good fortune.
Cole, who won his 100th England cap on Tuesday, has been a particularly strong point for the hosts, delivering ball after ball into his forwards in the Latcs' box.
64'—YELLOW CARD (Scharner)
Paul Scharner is the first man in Mike Dean's book day after tripping up Oscar, who was threatening to break on the Wigan goal.
Arouna Kone comes on for Roger Espinoza. Martinez wants this.
And just like that, Wigan are back in the game.
Shaun Maloney pounces on some suspect goalkeeping, taking the ball to the right of Petr Cech before lashing an effort from the right corner of the Chelsea area.
Gary Cahill does his best to save the trickling effort, but is just too slow.
Back from that infamous three-match ban for the ballboy incident and it couldn't be any easier for Eden Hazard.
Cesar Azpilicueta cuts in from a surging run down the right wing, sliding a low effort into his Belgian teammate, who gleefully slams the ball past Ali Al-Habsi, scoring his ninth of the season.
55'—CHE 1-0 WIG
Franco Di Santo gets in behind the Chelsea defence in what is a rare break and the Argentine drives to the byline before pulling back a good ball.
However, Jean Beausejour is just too late in getting into the area and there's no other Latic to get onto the ball.
51'—CHE 1-0 WIG
As The Times' Matt Hughes touches on there, Stamford Bridge isn't exactly renowned for being one of the loudest grounds in the world and is showing just why that is today.
With a bit of boom from the stands, perhaps the Blues on the pitch would've unearthed that extra bit of "oomph" in finding the second goal today.
Brilliant piece of skill from Hazard leads to Lampard shot being blocked. Polite applause from the Matthew Harding Stand, loudest of the day— Matt Hughes (@MattHughesTimes) February 9, 2013
48'—CHE 1-0 WIG
Just as they ended the first half, Chelsea are back on top in the second period and have already seen a Frank Lampard chance blocked just outside the area.
Wigan just lacking that extra piece of ingenuity and choosing to lump the ball forward rather than build up momentum.
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